From Arthez de Bearn to Peyrehorade (2018-08-25)

A nice and calm day.

While packing I had some rain but I managed to have almost all stuff into the bags dry. It is the condensation that causes most of the waterdrops since every night had been without any wind. Only the tent was wet but I pack that into it's own drybag (the red one). Which also is a very handy solution to keep things wet haha.

If you pack wet trick is to very first erect the tent when you're at the next campsite. If possible (when the tent is fully selfstanding, so can stand without lines and pegs), flip it over to a side. That way the bottom and the footprint will dry, especially inbetween them (which surfaces otherwise will never dry).

Also open all the outer- and innerdoors. Hang out the outertent (a separate piece as I have now). And spread out the sleepingbag somewhere, if possible. Then you can have an cold drink, not before haha.

I had already found out that that 17% uphill was even to steep to cycle with an unloaded bicycle. I had to push very heavely when trying to visit the town and the supermarket. Which means I had to push with only my tows hitting the ground. So it would simply be impossible to take this route to leave. Fortunately I found an alternative route for the (shortest) one the gps had suggested me. After only some 5 minutes of climbing (that I managed cycling in 1st gear) I was away from that superhill called Arthez de Bearn. And found myself on a very calm and small road with only very few cars passing. Via this detour I arrived at the mainroad to Orthez. And after about 2 kms a hill was arrising ... At the same moment it started to rain again. Ofcourse, Murphy's law that is.

Halfway that hill there was a dry spot under the trees were I halted to shelter. I was not wearing rainclothes and did not want to get to wet. But I stood on a main road and I didn't feel to secure about that stop.

I decided to walk to the church I saw just some 200 meters ahead. And indeed, I could shelter there under a small roof. Within 15 minutes 3 pilgrims passed me, I was at the official Sint Jacobs track here. But in the "wrong" direction haha. I prayed to myself (I am not religious) to have nice weather soonest ... That did the trick then after about 20 minutes rain stopped and I continued. However I had to push some 300 meters since it was to steep to restart cycling.

And as usual after any uphill a downhill will occur. I freewheeled and freewheeled and enjoyed this highspeed bonus. The weather was a bit critical, but for the time being I still didn't need my rainjacket. I was not fully concentrated but suddenly I realised there was something rather big lying at the road that I had only just dodged. And I knew instantly that it was a bird of pray. I braked, parked the bicycle to the guardrail and returned.

It was an owl that had been catched by a car. The very first time I see an owl Not in a zoo, which is normal since they hunt at night (were I don't anymore). But to see one that is dead ... I entered Orthez and finally experienced some "life" during my daytrip. There was even enough life there to have the boulangerie Not have any sandwiche anymore. For more then 10 years already I don't use (separate) fat, sugar and salt anymore. But sometimes, like Now, I have to compromise on that. And let me tell you : in France any citroncake tasts marvelous ! As do all coffees. While cycling out of Orthez I passed this very old bridge with tower from the 13th century. The surrounding part of the town was nice to see too. This bridge is crossing the river Gave de Pau that is flowing here through Orthez. Further on it will flow into the Les Gaves Reunis river to finally end up in the Atlantic Ocean near Bayonne. Directly next to the river is a railwaytrack and there was this official (?) graffiti on a barriercabinet. It seems rather important info, I guess it is to control the TGV. One can only hope that no (other) person will cover this important info with real graffiti haha.

By the way : In Mulhouse you can visit a Very Nice Musee Chemin de Fer (road of iron, so a railwaymuseum). I cycled out of town and into rural area. And was instantly warned again for the most famous products of France : the winebottle and the 2CV ! This bottle even has a sign of a mountainbike track on it. And that CV means cheval, horse, the first 2CV's had about 2 horsepower ... There was a boat that had somehow missed the river ... This is definitely the land of the (big) crucifixes. There are lots and lots of them here, at least one every kilometer. And it was obvious that the end of the summerseason was not to far away anymore. I ate my last nectarine in a very small town. A family stopped their car to ask me whether I knew of any restaurant here. Nope, there are hardly any people living here, no clientele also.

I offered them to share the (1) apple I had left, but they choose to explore the "town". I saw them three times riding and turning and searching, but they are still hungry I suppose. Then I reached Peyrehorade. The camping is just across the river Les Gaves Reunis, the river that unites the Gave de Pau and the Gave d'Oloron just a few kilometers east of Peyrehorade. As you see at the heightprofile the track was decending slightly. It did not really cycle that easy but that was due to some rising headwind.

I have decided to split up my usual "cycle to and stay at" blog into two. Then there are lots of things worthwhile showing and writing about. Putting this all into one blog as until now makes for too long blogs. Were they still have to compromise. So this is the first blog that is not of the combined type but about the YesTrip of today.

Enjoy the next blog about my stay in Peyrehorade !


Newsletter Route Random blog
Translations Translations